JTA NEWS
24 June 2017 - 1 Tammuz 5777 - א' תמוז ה' אלפים תשע"ז
JTA NEWS :
News
Former Israeli President Shimon Peres dies E-mail

Israel’s elder statesman Shimon Peres passed away at the age of 93 from a stroke on 28 September in a Tel Aviv hospital. World leaders, hundreds of dignitaries and diplomats representing around 70 countries assembled for his funeral on Jerusalem’s Mount Herzyl national cemetery on 30 September.

Born in 1923, Wołożyn, Poland (now Valozhyn, Belarus), he immigrated to Palestine with his family at the age of eleven and grew up in Tel Aviv.

Peres served as both prime minister (1984–86 and 1995– 96) and president (2007–14) and as leader of the Israel Labour Party (1977–92, 1995–97 and 2003–05). Peres was the county’s ninth President.

In 1993, in his role as Israeli foreign minister, Peres helped negotiate a peace accord with Yāsir Arafāt, chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), for which they, along with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, were jointly awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1994. “Now his work is in the hands of Israel’s next generation,” US President Barack Obama said during the funeral. Israel’s Prime Minister Delivering a eulogy, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said: “That so many leaders came from around the world to bid farewell to Shimon is a testament to his optimism, his quest for peace.” Former US President Bill Clinton, who helped negotiate the Oslo peace accords between Israel and the Palestinians in the 1990s, said he was Israel’s “biggest dreamer”.

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Israeli firm to set up cyber security academies in India E-mail

Acting on the recent bilateral agreement on homeland security between Israel and India, a cyber security company from Israel, Vital Intelligence Group, announced in September that it will establish cyber security academies in India.

The firm is expected to kick off operations in Mumbai next April, and will then establish branches in New Delhi and Hyderabad.

The academies will give defence training to the government, private organisations and private citizens in various disciplines of cyber security that will meet the needs of “emergency management, law enforcement, disaster management and safety organisations, military and governmental agencies, and private security groups”.

It plans to provide courses ranging from a diploma to a four-year specialisation in cyber security and cyber defence. The company could also provide special training to the government and its security agencies, including the military, if invited to do so.

Marc Kahlberg, Chief Executive Officer of the company and a former Israeli Defense Force and National Police Officer, said experts from his team researched crime rates in Mumbai for six months before planning to establish the company in India. He claimed that the institute can provide vital knowledge that will help security agencies investigate crimes effectively.

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Chinese-speaking tour guides E-mail

With Chinese tourism to Israel increasing, Israel’s Ministry of Tourism is looking to university students to fill its lack of Chinese-speaking tour guides.

The ministry is offering a grant of nearly US$4,000 to each undergraduate or graduate student of East Asia Studies who undergoes the rigorous tour-guide course and becomes licensed to lead Chinese groups.

Israel’s Tourism Ministry reports that tourism from China grew 43% from 2014 to 2015. It estimates that 100,000 residents of China will visit Israel by 2018.

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Israeli embassy in Vietnam carries out humanitarian mission E-mail

Israel’s embassy in Vietnam, together with the local Family Medical Practice network, recently carried out a seven-day humanitarian mission to one of the country’s poorest areas.

A multinational team comprised of over 120 doctors, nurses and logistics personnel travelled to Kon Tum to offer free medical care and medications, guide the local medical staff in family medicine, provide a modern ultrasound machine to the Kong Plong district hospital, and distribute basic food products and clothing.

The mission, founded by Dr Rafi Kot, touched the lives of over 8,000 people through the provision of essential medical and basic care.

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Holocaust-denying leaflets distributed on university campuses E-mail

Leaflets claiming that the Holocaust never happened were distributed at Australian universities in September. They have been referred to university authorities for investigation, and have led to calls for tougher action against racism on university campuses.

The leaflets asserted that the Nazi genocide against Jewish and other communities during WWII never occurred, and that historical evidence of the Holocaust is “the greatest swindle of all time”. Michael Fisher, national chairman of the Australasian Union of Jewish Students, called the distribution of the leaflets “part of a co-ordinated campaign aimed at intimidating Jewish students and academics”.

“Although the leaflets are closely similar to one another in content and appearance, they have appeared in three slightly different forms, suggesting that there have been three separate print runs,” he said.

Fisher described the leaflets as “toxic propaganda” and “a contemptible attempt to abuse and isolate Jewish students and staff, many of whom lost family in the Holocaust and whose grandparents in Australia are survivors of the genocide”. Fisher identified “neo-Nazi groups” as the most likely authors and distributors of the leaflets.

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